2017 · Pinoy Indie

Ang Larawan

 

Larawan

FILM INFO

Based on the 1997 stage play, Ang Larawan the Musical which in turn was based on “A Portrait of the Artist as Filipino” by National Artist, Nick Joaquin. The film was set in 1941 just before the World War II in a mansion located in Manila. This movie is directed by Loy Arcenas under Culturtrain Productions Inc.

Casts: Paulo Avelino, Rachel Alejandro, Joanna Ampil, Sandino Martin, Cris Villonco, Aicelle Santos, Nonie Buencamino, Robert Arevalo, Celeste Legazpi, Zsa Zsa Padilla, Ogie Alcasid, Rayver Cruz, Jojit Lorenzo, Dulce, Bernardo Bernardo, Jaime Fabregas

Genre: Musical

WHAT I LIKE?

Finally, a full-length and old-fashioned Pinoy Musical Masterpiece that successfully executed its Musical Scenes and at the same time depicted a nostalgic feeling of Philippine History and Literature… Ang Larawan is truly worthy to be the 2017 Metro Manila Film Festival Best Picture that offers appreciation of our very own treasures. The movie will take you to Old Manila specifically in Intramuros set before the World War II. I must say that being a Period Movie, Ang Larawan exceeded expectations in terms of execution. From houses, walls, costumes and even down to the choices of words, I really can see the careful and extensive research done to achieve a perfect depiction of a film set in 1941 in the Philippines. I really like how Arcenas utilized different techniques especially on musical scenes. He effectively played around the same corner of the house in majority of the scenes but set a perfect and unique mood in each sequences that will make a feeling that it was shot somewhere else. Arcenas is faithful with the material and loves to keep intact with a certain scene while highlighting the emotions of the characters. This technique truly captivated me with every frame and it almost feel like I can see raw emotions from each of the characters. Ang Larawan’s success is of course attributed with the Musical production that composed of nearly 95% of the film’s running time. I am just amazed with Ryan Cayabyab’s composition as well as the interpretation of the characters. Joanna Ampil is truly impressive and deserving of the Best Actress Award as well. She got my attention most of the time. She was just brilliant and emotionally-engaging. Rachel Alejandro was a good support too. I really love majority of their duets as well. Paulo Avelino was also perfect with his role as Tony Javier. He may not sing as good as everyone else but he was convincing in his portrayal as a desperate and shady small-time pianist in the film. Aside from the amazing lead characters, the film is well-supported with other amazing performances of well-known celebrities and gem of Philippine showbiz. Their musical collaboration is some scenes are such a joy to watch on the big screen. If you are in to quality films and you love Philippine History and Literature, Ang Larawan might be one of your favorite films so far.

WHAT I DON’T LIKE?

Given that its a full-length Musical Film, expect that majority of conversations will be sang of course. Not-so-fan of the genres may find the movie boring given the formula. Also, to manage everyone’s expectations, Ang Larawan is more of a direct translation of a masterpiece which means that you should not be expecting grand musical numbers rather a series of conversations sang beautifully and with emotions. It won’t be everyone’s cup of tea especially as compared with other MMFF 2017 Entries but Ang Larawan is truly a gem of Philippine cinema.

RATINGS:

10/10 Popcorns.

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2017

Why La La Land is worth every cent?

la_la_land_ver3                        PICTURE SOURCE

FILM INFO

La La Land evolves on the story of an aspiring actress named Mia and a jazz musician named Sebastian who are both struggling with their lives and career in Los Angeles. This musical masterpiece will bring you to a whirlwind of romance, joy and even pain towards reaching your dreams and falling in love. This Liongate Film flick is written and directed by Damien Chazelle.

Casts: Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, John Legend, J.K. Simmons, Rosemarie DeWitt & Finn Wittrock

Genre: Comedy, Drama, Romance, Musical (PG13)

WHAT I LIKE?

I like and love everything about the film. For me, the best Musical Film ever produced in Hollywood that is worth every cent of  your admission ticket and deserving of all its awards and recognitions. Finally, the Musical Genre has brought to life in this one of a kind masterpiece that will bring you to a solid rollercoaster of emotions. Literally, the movie will inspire you, make you laugh, will let you fall in love and will even tear your hearts. The Director has brilliantly crafted a very engaging and engrossing storyline and its creatively staged musical numbers within the film. Moreover, the Los Angeles scene was just so perfect for the film. The Production Design is superb and I just love how everything fits into perfection in one frame. At some point, the movie will bring you to another world. Apart from that, the movie has successfully justified its message regarding your dreams in life and the stakes you are willing to take to achieve it. Musical scoring and arrangement was also great. Conversations are engaging and the whole tone was just right to maintain your interest for the next 2 hours. I find the plot to be generally friendly but was done with depth and artistry. What is fascinating about La La Land is a superb fusion of modern day Hollywood vibe with some old school feels. At some parts, you seem to be stucked in the old times then suddenly be reminded that it is happening at present times. That alone is pure magic. Its like a work of art indeed. The greatest thing also about the film is the undeniably amazing and magical chemistry of Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling that shined throughout. They are just so perfect and amusing to watch. They got all their shining moments right and have given their best performances right. Aside from acting and singing, they were good in their dance numbers as well. The ending got me in tears. That was one of the most powerful and striking ending I have ever seen. It had me linger for a while.

WHAT I DON’T LIKE?

I am sorry but I can’t seem to point what I don’t like aside from the fact that I didn’t see a topless Ryan Gosling on this one.

RATINGS:

10/10 Popcorns.